The Rube’s Review: Rock n’ Rule (1983)
When I was a wee lil’ Rube, we didn’t have televised weekly profanity such as South Park, Family Guy or Spongebob, but every once in awhile an animated movie would come out that wasn’t full of princesses that sang with tweeting woodland critters while they made a dress out of scrapes and leftovers.
Yes, once and awhile you would have a sleepover at your friend’s house with “the cool parents,” the ones with a rental card to the shithole video store that was very liberal about kids renting Adult Movies. Other than renting adolescent classics like Porky’s, Revenge of the Nerds, and Re-animator we would mix it up a bit with animation… and I’m not talking about The Snorks! It was rare, but sometimes an animated movie would come out that was not only adult oriented and featured the most kickass music. The most famous one that comes to everyone’s mind is Heavy Metal, but there were others… my favorite happened to be ROCK & RULE.
Rock & Rule takes place years after the Third World War, where the surviving animals have evolved into society of anthropomorphic humans. The main story starts with Mok, a Mick Jagger-like supervillian/super rocker that is looking for “The Voice” that will unleash a beast of absolute power. After years of searching he finds Angel, backup singer and girlfriend of Ohmar (voiced by Paul Le Mat, of American Graffiti fame), shitty boyfriend and lead singer of the Drats. The band gets invited to MOK’s lair and though the use of magic/parlor tricks and drugs, Angel gets kidnapped and taken to Nuke York. Once Ohmar learns of MOK’s evil plan for Angel to be used as the key to another world, it’s up to him and his bandmates to save the day.
For it’s time, the animation and character design is fantastic with very good voice acting, especially for Cindy, a top-heavy bulldog-ish girl with blonde pigtails and rollerstakes… which to this day must be one of the Rubes’ first animated crush. Hey, don’t judge me! There’s also use of computer graphics, which was still in the infant stages of animation but at the time was very cool to see.
The music has the 80’s seal of approval with great songs from Debra Harry, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop, Cheap Trick, Earth Wind and Fire and others. Yeah, the soundtrack might seem dated but they’re still some great songs, especially the song My Name is Mok (see above). I bring up this ode to the villain’s ego because for a brief moment the movie takes a break and you get to see a kickass music video… and that’s what Rock & Rule is all about; your basic story about good vs. evil with some awesome animation and great tunes.
If you’re interested in seeing it, and not paying $100 or more on Amazon.com, you can currently find Rock & Rule on a 2-disc DVD by Unearthed Films.